DALLAS – A Texas teenager who became a global sensation after he was arrested for bringing a homemade clock to school that was mistaken for a bomb will be meeting foreign dignitaries at the United Nations this week, a family friend said on Tuesday.
Ahmed Mohamed, 14, a Muslim student who dabbles in robotics and attended a Dallas area high school, touched off a social media firestorm with many seeing his arrest as being tied to his religion.
He also won support from President Barack Obama, who personally invited him to the White House for an astronomy night, and Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg, who said, “having the skill and ambition to build something cool should lead to applause, not arrest.”
Mohamed, a bespectacled ninth-grader with a penchant for wearing NASA T-shirts, attended Google’s science fair on Monday at its Mountain View campus in California.
He will be at the United Nations in New York with his family on Wednesday, according to Alia Salem, executive director of the Dallas-Fort Worth chapter of the Council of American-Islamic Relations.
The boy’s social schedule has been draining, his father told the Dallas Morning News, saying his son has not been eating or sleeping well.
The father, Mohamed Elhassan Mohamed, also told the paper his son does not feel comfortable returning to MacArthur High School, where the incident happened, and will withdraw from the school district.
Ahmed Mohamed was accused of making a hoax bomb, handcuffed and questioned. He received a three-day suspension from the high school over the clock he put together to impress his new classmates and teachers.
No charges were filed and police said they would review the decisions officers made in his arrest.
Police did not call out the bomb squad and the school was not evacuated.